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Forte Group to splurge Rs 1,000 crore in India

By , agencyfaqs! | In | July 15, 2000
Britain's largest hotel operator Forte Hotel Group plans to invest about Rs 1,000 crore over the next three to five years to make the Le Meridien brand the largest international operator in India.

agencyfaqs! News Bureau
NEW DELHI, July 15
Britain's largest hotel operator Forte Hotel Group has big designs on India. It plans to invest about Rs 1,000 crore over the next three to five years to make the Le Meridien brand the largest international operator in India. Briefing mediapersons in Delhi today, Bernard Lambert, president and managing director, Le Meridien Hotels and Resorts, said that with this investment, the group plans to have a portfolio of 10 hotels in India, representing some 4,000 rooms by 2004.
Lambert added that by the end of this year Le Meridien would have added another three branches in India. And following the opening of the 243-room Le Royal Meridien Chennai, Le Royal Meridien Mumbai next month and Cochin later this year, Le Meridien Hotels and Resorts would become the ''largest international hotel brand operating in India.''
He said Forte Hotel Group, currently the largest hotel operator in the United Kingdom, is set to duplicate that position in India. ''India and Middle East are instrumental in doubling the Meridien global portfolio in three years -- we would like 250 hotels worldwide by 2003," Lambert said.
Le Meridien plans to open 150 hotels and resorts in India by the end of 2000. Its first quarter 2000 results for Indian hotels showed a 14 per cent increase over the previous year. "It indicates the potential for both tourism and corporate business in the country," Lambert said. "Our expansion strategy calls for a presence in all the major commercial and tourist centres like Cochin and Goa," he added.
Recently, Le Meridien established another first for an international hotel group in India with the opening of a local market reservations centre for domestic and worldwide reservations.
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